The Dress

Me Flanked by My Brothers Frank and Bob at My Niece’s Wedding

I’m sure you have “a dress,” or “a top,” or “a suit,” or some other article of clothing or accessory you’ve had forever that you truly treasure.

Here are some photos of “my dress,” a Lolita Lempicka creation I acquired in Paris well over two decades ago. I’ve worn it about a half dozen times in my life and each time it makes me feel like a million bucks. I’ve donned it for weddings, very elegant dinners in Paris, and yes, even for a beaux arts costume ball. As fancy as it is, it’s fortunately timeless. And it still fits!

This chartreuse and lavender dream dress embraced my curves perfectly in the beginning. Then there was a time when I filled it out a bit much. (Thank goodness for spanks!) Now that I’m older and somewhat withered (yes, sadly I no longer have the robust décolleté I once boasted), it fits me less than perfectly. But it’s still a showstopper–at least in my eyes.

With My Niece, Rachel, a Maid of Honor

It’s superbly cut from a thick, rich silk, which means that the fabric always hangs beautifully. I’ve kept it in mint condition aside from some pulls. My kitten gained access to it once and climbed up it with ease. I was heartbroken, especially since I normally had it covered with a plastic dry cleaner bag but somehow she caught it when it has hanging outside of the closet after a big soirée. I almost retired it then but I decided it’s so spectacular that most people wouldn’t notice. (Plus, as my almost 84-year-old mother says, “No one can see very well anymore anyway.”)

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Holiday Online Shopping Recommendations 2015

Swiss Dog Collars and Leashes for Your Precious Pups from Alpen Schatz

Swiss Dog Collars and Leashes for Your Precious Pups from Alpen Schatz

Terrace Holiday-Pretty Plates from Quel Objet

Terafeu Holiday-Pretty Plates from Quel Objet

A Superlative Blanc de Blanc from Henri's Reserve

A Superlative Blanc de Blancs from Henri’s Reserve

Well, it’s that time of year again. Time to think about shopping. Oh wait, you’ve probably been thinking about it–and even doing some of it–the past week. Good on you if that’s the case. Others (like me) haven’t even begun to tackle their holiday shopping despite a deluge of offers that have flooded our inboxes.

I recommend keeping it simple and shopping online for those on your list that live a distance from you. Have that something special sent directly to their door, so that you don’t have to put up with all the wrapping, packaging and waiting in line at your local post office or shipper. And while you’re at it, pick up something for yourself because that’s just what we do when holiday shopping.

I showcase a curated list of favorite purveyors at my Online Shopping Page, most of whom offer discounts between 8 and 10% to Bonjour Colorado readers. Go directly there if you want my more lengthy descriptions. Otherwise, check out my highlights and some other add-ons below.

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17 Dec 2013, 3:40pm
Colorado Fashion & Style Shopping Skiing & Snowboarding Telluride:
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The Look on the Slopes: Early Ski Season 2013-2014

Me Posing at Telluride Ski Resort

Me Posing at Telluride Ski Resort

Life has been getting pretty colorful around here at the Telluride Ski Resort lately. Most of the mountain is open and we’ve had many classic Colorado bluebird days. The holiday visitors have yet to arrive, however, I’ve been seeing oodles of punches of color throughout our sparsely populated slopes. I’ve been so busy with wrapping things up at my desk and ski school training, that it wasn’t until last weekend that I spent some quality time perusing this year’s fashions at Bootdoctors, one of my favorite outdoor gear and clothing retailers in T-ride. This time, I wanted to chat with the girls in the shop—Sooz and Pam—and get the lowdown on this year’s look on the mountain. And, of course, how could I resist trying on a number of outfits and even modeling my favorite one here for you?

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5 Jun 2012, 3:02pm
Art & Culture Fashion & Style Shopping Travel:
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Imperial Shopping to China

The Bund, Shanghai’s Colonial Waterfront

I just learned from my friends at Imperial Tours that they have put together a special Holiday Shopping Tour to China to take place November 10th-18th. This exclusive travel company, renowned for their expertise in China, will be conducting a small group tour (8-16 people) to Beijing and Shanghai that features some of the most exciting and selective shopping haunts of this exotic land. While there will be some fantastic sightseeing during this 8-night/9-day tour, the highlight will be on finding the best treasures in China such as antiques, couture, jade, pearls, cashmere, ceramics, embroidery as well as personal, home and table accessories galore.  Markets, exclusive boutiques and private studios of local designers will be visited during this unique tour.

Travelers may want to go early or stay later if they have an interest in buying traditional and/or contemporary art since Imperial Tours enjoys special entrées within the art market including access to private collections, experts and artists.

It sounds like now is the time to do such a trip to China. You can find lots of cutting-edge designers that are redefining style along with many traditional goods —all at still reasonable prices—within this burgeoning super power. I visited China nearly two decades ago and returned with a Marco Polo-sized cache of goods that I still cherish amidst my French-inspired decor. more »

8 May 2012, 5:57pm
Art & Culture Colorado Denver Fashion & Style Podcasts Travel:
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Denver Art Museum Salutes Yves Saint Laurent and More

One of Many Engaging Displays at the YSL Show in Denver

“Rien n’est plus beau qu’un corps nu.

Le plus beau vêtement qui puisse habiller une femme ce sont les bras de l’homme qu’elle aime.

Mais pour celles qui n’ont pas eu la chance de trouver ce bonheur je suis là.”

—Yves Saint Laurent

I’d loosely translate the above as follows:

Nothing is more beautiful than a naked body.

The most beautiful clothing that can dress a woman are the arms of the man she loves.

But for those who don’t have the fortune to find this happiness, I am there.

One of Many YSL Ball Gowns on View at the Denver Art Museum

Wow! That’s how I feel about the above and that was my reaction after visiting Yves Saint Laurent:  The Retrospective at the Denver Art Museum (DAM) recently. Wow, wow, wow. What a gorgeous show. Men, please keep reading and listen to the below podcast. Even those of you that might not have an interest in fashion will surely be dazzled by this extraordinary exhibition.Yves Saint Laurent, one of the most legendary fashion designers, opened his first couture house in Paris in the early 1960s at a time when the world would experience great change, especially for women.

From a historical perspective, the YSL retrospective is fascinating. It’s a dynamic show that examines the many external events that influenced this man’s forty years of creativity through a variety of media including photography and videos.

But let’s get back to the women. This man loved women. So much so, in fact, that he primarily worked on live models so that he could take in their gestures, their movements, their élégance. “He really had a goal of making women feel loved and empowered from what they were wearing,” says Tara Moberly, from the press department of the DAM, in our below interview. Indeed and this show-stopping exhibition offers a stunning look at Yves Saint Laurent’s work throughout his illustrious career. From the wall of colors that showcase the couturier’s vast collection of swatches to the black on black display of his famous tuxedos to the grand finale of ball gowns, this exhibition provides a feast for the eyes at every turn.

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Valentine’s Shopping Recommendations

Telluride Truffle’s Velvet Heart

Austrian Gem Heart and Chain from Alpen Schatz

Now that the Super Bowl is behind us, it’s time to focus on love. Yes, that’s right I’m talking about Valentine’s Day and you still have time to order a special something online for your sweetie, your mom or dad, your daughter who’s away at school, your mother-in-law or that dear friend you want to remember. There’s no need to fuss, just go ahead and let my handpicked selection of purveyors send the package off for you.

Telluride Truffle has earned my affection with their medium velvet heart filled with incredibly beautiful and delicious hand painted, glossy chocolates. Ruth’s Toffee, another local favorite, continues to rate as my all-time favorite for toffee. Type in promo code Bonjour in the coupon box for Telluride Truffle and mention Bonjour Colorado to Ruth to receive a 10% discount on online orders.

Looking to really make a statement? Select an Austrian Gemstone Heart from Alpen Schatz, a European-styled boutique and online shopping emporium based in Telluride. Colorado. These precious gem hearts come in three different sizes in a variety of stones including rose quartz, crushed crystal, onyx, turquoise and more. Handcrafted by a master jeweler in Salzburg, Austria, these heirloom-quality treasures surely show your love for this Valentine’s and forever. If you’re working off of a smaller budget, consider Alpen Schatz’s Italian silk scarves and  alpine scarf ornaments, also offered in a variety of colors and styles. Type in Bonjour upon check out to receive a 10% discount on online orders.

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More Online Shopping Recommendations

Beautiful and Edible Treats for the Doggies

The heck with ordering from Amazon or Lands’ End, why not be more original and shop from a quaint online boutique? I’m thrilled to see that mom-and-pop Internet businesses continue to open daily, so let’s patronize them as much as possible. These little shops and shopping offers—whether online or on your street corner—make up the soul of America.

For pampered pups, order some freshly-baked dog treats from My Dog’s Bakery, a business recently located to Ridgway, Colorado. I can’t say they’re delicious, however, they are yummy-looking and surely lovingly made.

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My Best Online Shopping Recommendations

Singing, Dancing Marmot Skier from Alpen Schatz

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    This blog is a personal blog written and edited by Maribeth Clemente. This blog sometimes accepts forms of cash advertising, sponsorship, paid insertions or other forms of compensation. The compensation received may influence the advertising content, topics or posts made in this blog. That content, advertising space or post may not always be identified as paid or sponsored content. The owner of this blog is sometimes compensated to provide opinion on products, services, Web sites and various other topics. Even though the owner of this blog receives compensation for certain posts or advertisements, she always gives her honest opinions, findings, beliefs or experiences on those topics or products. The views and opinions expressed on this blog are purely the blogger's own. Any product claim, statistic, quote or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer, provider or party in question. This blog does not contain any content which might present a conflict of interest.
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